Washington—Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) today released the following statement on House passage of the Coastal Economies Protection Act. That legislation includes Feinstein’s West Coast Ocean Protection Act to ban new offshore drilling in federal waters:
“California made it clear after the 1969 Santa Barbara oil spill that it no longer wanted to risk the economic and environmental damage that comes with offshore drilling. But without a permanent ban on drilling in federal waters, our magnificent coastline remains at risk.
“I’m pleased to see the House pass a federal drilling ban. This is a strong rebuke of the administration’s efforts to increase oil extraction regardless of the risk to local communities.
“In the face of climate change, California has moved decisively to protect the environment, promote renewable energy and move toward a cleaner, lower carbon economy. It’s time we do the same nationwide.
“I urge the Senate to take up this bill and pass it before more of our marine ecosystems are damaged by oil spills.”
- The House-passed legislation contains Senator Feinstein’s West Coast Ocean Protection Act, a bill to permanently ban offshore drilling in federal waters off the coast of California, Oregon and Washington.
- California blocked all new offshore drilling in state waters after the 1969 Santa Barbara spill, which leaked 3 million gallons of crude oil into the ocean.
- New offshore drilling leases in federal waters off California’s coast have been successfully blocked since 1984, but only a permanent ban will ensure coastal economies and marine ecosystems are protected from new drilling and potential spills.